‘Amid today’s leadership crisis, people are looking at individuals to bring about political change’

Claiming that Narendra Modi had emerged as a robust leader, yoga expert and social activist Baba Ramdev on Sunday said the Bharatiya Janata Party would do well to project Gujarat Chief Minister as its leader in the next general elections if it wanted to return to power at the Centre.

However, he said the BJP and the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh had to take the final call on the matter, speaking at a press conference here.

Slamming the UPA government, Mr. Ramdev said the Congress had no chance of retaining power due to its ‘anti-people’ policies. The BJP, however, had an opportunity to come back to power provided it reworked its priorities, he said. “Narendra Modi has emerged as an icon of development who has zero tolerance for corruption,” said the activist.

He also said the outcome of the next general elections would reflect a shift in popular perception of national leaders.

“The country is facing a leadership crisis and therefore people are looking at individuals instead of political parties to bring about positive change,” he said.

Mr. Ramdev said the Congress government at the Centre had failed the people. “People have realised that the Congress is anti-social and anti-national. It has committed so many social and political sins that people will never vote for it again,” he said.

Asked about social activist Anna Hazare’s style of functioning, Mr. Ramdev said political participation was necessary in addition to building up of social pressure.

He said Mr. Hazare wanted to stay away, but joining politics was necessary in order to change the system from within. Laws were made by parliamentarians and not by saints and monks, he said.